In a world where natural resources are becoming more and more precious it is important for us to find new ways to use products that we may have previously discarded. One such example is from the lobster industry where researchers believe they can use a waste product to save lives.
For example, each year in Maine millions of pounds of lobsters are harvested for human consumption, and as they are cleaned for sale their hemolymph (the lobster equivalent of blood) is washed down the drain. Lobster Unlimited of Orono believe that if this was harvested it could have potential medical benefits for humans.
Previous studies have shown that lobster hemolymph has antiviral and anticancer properties. More research will be required to determine the mechanisms of these properties, and exactly which compounds are involved in fighting viruses and cancer. If the active compounds in the fluid could be extracted, they would have potential to create medications that could improve human health. It’s not as crazy as it might sound, the hemolymph of another crustacean, the horseshoe crab is already used pharmaceutically. While there is a long way to go before these medications could hit shelves this novel use of a waste product has great medical potential.
Source: STAT News
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